Walt Disney World

How To Plan a Disney Vacation for a Large Family

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Planning a Disney vacation for a large family can seem like a daunting task. With so many things to consider, from accommodations and dining to transportation and park attractions, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. However, with careful planning and a few insider tips, you can create a magical Disney experience that your entire family will remember for years to come.


Planning a Disney vacation for a large family involves utilizing Disney’s group booking services and family packages, budgeting wisely (booking early, traveling during off-peak times, considering a Disney Dining Plan, bringing your own food, and looking for group discounts), choosing the right accommodations that can comfortably house your family, planning your park itinerary wisely, exploring various dining options, and strategizing on how to navigate the parks. Remember to plan early, be flexible, and prioritize experiences for a memorable vacation.

Utilizing Disney’s Group Booking Services and Family Packages

Disney offers a plethora of services and packages designed to cater to large families and groups. To qualify as a group at Walt Disney World, you need to book a minimum of 10 rooms at a Disney Resort hotel. This not only provides access to helpful tools that make planning for a large group easier than booking individual rooms but also unlocks potential discounts and special offers.

For instance, staying at an Official Disney Partner Hotel offers exclusive Disney benefits, such as complimentary shuttle services to Walt Disney World Resort and a variety of dining options. You can also take advantage of complimentary transportation for guests staying at Disney Resort hotels to and from the parks, reducing the hassle of coordinating multiple cars or rental vehicles.

Budgeting Tips for Large Families at Disney

Disney vacations can be costly, but with some careful planning and savvy strategies, it’s possible to enjoy a magical Disney vacation without breaking the bank. Here are some tips to help large families save money:

  • Book Early: Purchasing rooms and tickets early can help secure better rates and availability.
  • Travel During Off-Peak Times: Prices for tickets, accommodations, and other expenses can be lower during non-peak times.
  • Consider a Disney Dining Plan: This can help manage food expenses and provide a variety of dining options.
  • Bring Your Own Food: Disney World allows guests to bring their own food into the parks, which can significantly save on dining costs.
  • Look for Group Discounts: Large groups booking at least ten rooms may be eligible for discounts on Disney Resort hotel rooms.

Choosing the Right Accommodations

Choosing the right accommodations is crucial when planning a Disney vacation for a large family. Options like family suites at Disney’s Art of Animation Resort or connecting rooms at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort can comfortably accommodate larger groups. These resorts offer various room options, from standard rooms to multi-bedroom villas, ensuring that everyone in your group has a comfortable place to rest after a long day at the parks.

Planning Your Park Itinerary

Planning your park itinerary is another crucial aspect of your Disney trip. Use crowd calendars and guidebooks to choose the best times to visit and plan your days in the parks. Book dining and FastPass+ reservations as early as possible, and consider using Disney Genie+ to manage wait times and plan your day more efficiently.

Remember that it’s okay to split up the group based on interests and ride height requirements. Set realistic expectations, and understand that you may not be able to do everything in one trip. Instead, prioritize the most important attractions and experiences for your group.

Dining at Disney

When it comes to dining at Disney, there are plenty of options to suit all tastes and budgets. Character dining experiences, such as those at Cinderella’s Royal Table or Chef Mickey’s, offer unforgettable memories along with delicious meals. Family-friendly restaurants like T-Rex Cafe in Disney Springs or the Hoop-Dee-Doo Musical Revue at Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground provide fun and entertainment for the whole family.

Navigating the Parks

Navigating the parks with a large family can be challenging, but with the right strategies, it can be manageable. Use park maps and apps to help you navigate, and set meeting points and times throughout the day to regroup. Walkie-talkies or messaging apps can help you stay in touch and coordinate your movements throughout the day.

Wrapping Up

Planning a Disney vacation for a large family doesn’t have to be stressful. With diligent planning, savvy budgeting, and a little flexibility, you can create a memorable Disney vacation that caters to everyone’s interests and needs. So start planning, and get ready to make magical memories with your family at the happiest place on Earth!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Disney Dining Plan and how does it work?

The Disney Dining Plan is a pre-paid meal plan for guests staying at Disney Resort hotels. The plan includes a certain number of meals and snacks per person, per night of your stay. Depending on the plan you choose, you can use these credits at Quick-Service locations, Table-Service restaurants, and select snack locations throughout Walt Disney World Resort.

What is Disney Genie+ and how can it help with my park itinerary?

Disney Genie+ is a service that allows you to skip the regular lines at select attractions for an additional cost. It’s available for purchase in the My Disney Experience app and can be used at both Walt Disney World Resort and Disneyland Resort. This service can help you efficiently manage your time in the parks and reduce wait times.

What are some family-friendly restaurants at Disney World?

There are numerous family-friendly dining options at Disney World. Some popular choices include Chef Mickey’s at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, the Crystal Palace in Magic Kingdom Park, and the Garden Grill at EPCOT. These restaurants offer a variety of menu options to cater to different tastes and dietary requirements.

How can I check the crowd levels at Disney parks?

There are several online resources that provide crowd calendars for Disney parks. These calendars predict the crowd levels for each day based on historical data and special events. Checking these calendars before your trip can help you plan your park days more strategically.

Are there any special services for families with young children at Disney parks?

Yes, Disney parks offer a variety of services for families with young children. These include Baby Care Centers, which provide a convenient location to feed, change, and nurse infants. There’s also the Rider Switch service, which allows adult guests to take turns waiting with young children or guests unable to ride, without having to wait in line twice.

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